Gaming Addiction Disorder; White House Pitches Big Changes For Education Department

Gaming disorder is the newest addictive disorder listed in the World Health Organization’s medical diagnostic guide. Symptoms include prioritizing video games over responsibilities and other activities, having no control over impulses to play, and increasing time spent playing video games regardless of the consequences. To be diagnosed, a person must have “significant impairment in personal, family, social, educational, occupational or other important areas of functioning” in the last year, according to the WHO.

Gaming disorder was added because a number of treatment programs for adults and teens with this addiction have sprung up around the world, the organization said. Additionally, the WHO reviewed existing evidence and consulted with experts before the addition.

Dr. Michael Bishop runs a treatment program he calls “a summer camp for screen overuse,” and this spring he told NPR’s Anya Kamenetz that one category of teens he often sees is boys, overwhelmingly, who spend so much time playing video games that they “fall behind in their social skills.” Often they are battling depression or anxiety, or they may be on the autism spectrum.

Full story at npr.org

Online Application Woes Make Students Anxious and Put Colleges Behind Schedule

With early admission deadlines looming for hundreds of thousands of students, the new version of the online Common Application shared by more than 500 colleges and universities has been plagued by numerous malfunctions, alarming students and parents and putting admissions offices weeks behind schedule

“It’s been a nightmare,” Jason C. Locke, associate vice provost for enrollment at Cornell University. “I’ve been a supporter of the Common App, but in this case, they’ve really fallen down.”

Colleges around the country have posted notices on their admissions Web sites, warning of potential problems in processing applications. Some Minnesota colleges have created an optional partial application. The Georgia Institute of Technology has one of the earliest fall application deadlines, Oct. 15, but it was not able to start reviewing applications on a large scale until last week and has postponed the deadline for some supporting paperwork until Nov. 1.

The problems have sown worry among students like Lily Geiger, a 12th grader at the Rudolf Steiner School in Manhattan, increasing the stress level in an already stressful experience. When she entered her essays into the application, what appeared on her computer screen was a garbled mess. Some words were mashed together; others were split in two by random spaces; there were swaths of blank space where text should have been; paragraph indentations were missing.

Full story of anxious students at the New York Times

5 Signs Your Teen Needs Mental Health Treatment

Teens go through emotional ups and downs all the time. Hormones are changing, life can seem overwhelming, and without much life experience, a young adult can feel misguided. When parents are busy working, or a natural separation from family occurs, teens may turn to friends instead of parents.

Peer support can be helpful for certain issues. But when the symptoms of a mental illness are present, more than a good friend is needed.

The problem is, teens may not understand what the feelings they experience mean. As a parent, it’s important to stay connected so that you notice any changes or any symptoms of a mental illness in your child.

Mental illness includes depression; anxiety; bipolar disorder;schizophrenia; borderline personality disorder; post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD); attention-deficit disorder (ADD); attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and many more disorders that can interfere with your teen’s daily life.

In an effort to self-medicate — to control the symptoms of the undiagnosed and untreated mental illness — a teen without help may turn to drugs, alcohol, or eating disorders to feel better, to escape, to numb out, or to feel in control.

Full story of signs for mental health treatment at PsychCentral

Drawing cartoons empowers teen with mental disorders

On the surface, Zack Hix is like many 18-year-olds.

The Simpsonville, South Carolina, teen’s favorite foods are cheeseburgers and pizza. He listens to rock and punk music. He loves to race mountain bikes, play video games, watch Georgia Bulldogs football with his dad and — perhaps most importantly — draw.

But Zack also suffers from a laundry list of mental health issues, including both intermittent explosive- and obsessive-compulsive disorders, which make him different from other kids his age and threaten to inhibit his ability to function as an independent adult.

Zack is diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, anxiety and depression, in addition to the IED and OCD. He also has Tourette syndrome and tics that are the result of a Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal Infection in the fifth grade.

Full story of cartoons and teens with mental disorders at CNN

Reduce Your Anxiety This Minute: 3 Different Types of Deep Breathing

Reducing Anxiety with Three Types of BreathingDeep breathing has become increasingly important in my recovery from depression and anxiety because I recognize that shallow breath contributes to my panic. In fact, at my worst hours, I would use a paper bag to keep from hyperventilating.

The practice of deep breathing stimulates our parasympathetic nervous system (PNS), responsible for activities that occur when our body is at rest. It functions in an opposite manner to the sympathetic nervous system, which stimulates activities associated with the fight-or-flight response.

I like to the think of the PNS as the calm sister and the sympathetic nervous system as the non-sympathetic crazy sister on the verge of a nervous breakdown.

You know that woman in the movie “Airplane” that’s wigging out (watch this clip), and there is a line behind her of people with weapons saying “Get hold of yourself.” The woman represents the sympathetic nervous system, and the long line of folks with bats, ropes, purses, etc. are members of the parasympathetic nervous system trying to calm the panicked passenger.

Full story of deep breathing to reduce anxiety at Psych Central

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How Your Mental Health May Be Impacting Your Career

Mental Health Impacting Your CareerOne American in two develops a mental illness at some point in their lives. At any moment in time, about 20 per cent of the population in developed countries has a mental illness.

We know surprisingly little about why so many people suffer depression, anxiety or addiction to drugs and alcohol. We do know, however, about the severe consequences on their social and economic lives.

In the U.S., people with a mental illness are two to three times more likely to be unemployed, and their employment rate is 15 percentage points lower than for those without mental health problems. They are also more likely to call-in sick, often for longer periods, and to under-perform at work. Similar patterns are found in other OECD countries.

There is also a strong link between mental instability and poverty. In the U.S., the income of people with severe mental health problems is almost three times more likely than average to fall below the poverty threshold. This risk is much higher in the U.S. than in most European countries that have stronger social safety nets.

Full story of mental health impacting careers at PBS Newshour

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Tired and edgy? Sleep deprivation boosts anticipatory anxiety

Sleep Deprivation Boosts AnxietyUC Berkeley researchers have found that a lack of sleep, which is common in anxiety disorders, may play a key role in ramping up the brain regions that contribute to excessive worrying.

Neuroscientists have found that sleep deprivation amplifies anticipatory anxiety by firing up the brain’s amygdala and insular cortex, regions associated with emotional processing. The resulting pattern mimics the abnormal neural activity seen in anxiety disorders. Furthermore, their research suggests that innate worriers – those who are naturally more anxious and therefore more likely to develop a full-blown anxiety disorder – are acutely vulnerable to the impact of insufficient sleep.

“These findings help us realize that those people who are anxious by nature are the same people who will suffer the greatest harm from sleep deprivation,” said Matthew Walker, a professor of psychology and neuroscience at UC Berkeley and senior author of the paper, to be published tomorrow (Wednesday, June 26) in the Journal of Neuroscience.

Full story of sleep and anxiety at UC Berkeley News

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How The Anxiety Epidemic In The American Workplace Is Ruining Your Health

Anxiety in the Workplace Ruining HealthAmerica is famously the most anxious nation in the world, with 31 percent of the country dealing with symptoms of anxiety, according to the World Health Organization.

While there are a host of factors that contribute to anxiety, our work culture plays a big role. It’s where people spend most of their waking hours; and how we process our work lives has a dramatic affect on our well being.

“Surveys show that stress levels [in the US] have progressively increased over the past four decades,” Paul J. Rosch, MD, Chairman of the Board of The American Institute of Stress, told the Atlantic’s Maura Kelly.

Technology is a huge part of this trend, as it’s completely transformed how we live and work. We’re now connected 24/7, and the rapid pace of innovation means that almost any industry is constantly on the verge of being disrupted.

Full story of anxiety in the workplace at Business Insider

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TeachME: New Courses

New Courses for TEACHMECEUsMedical Assessment and Treatment of HIV

$12.00 [3.00 CE Hours]
The information for this intermediate level course was taken from a Department of Health and Human Services publication, and it outlines the steps for providing effective medical assessment and treatment for HIV-infected substance-abusing clients. Included is a brief overview of adherence issues, standards of care and barriers to this care, pharmacologic aspects, and health issues that affect HIV/AIDS and substance abusing clients.

Electronic Aggression and Cyber-Bullying

$4.00 [1.00 CE Hours]
This brief intermediate level course is designed to give an overview of electronic aggression, which is any type of harassment or bullying perpetrated through technology. The course was developed using information from The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and provides valid information about victims and perpetrators of this type of aggression. Research in this area is discussed as well as prevalence and risk and protective factors for victims and perpetrators. The course is particularly relevant for psychologists, counselors, educators, or other professionals who work with young people who may encounter electronic aggression.

Tuberculosis, HIV and Hepatitis B

$12.00 [3.00 CE Hours]
CE
This intermediate level course presents a set of recommendations that will help to reduce TB disease in people living with HIV as well as their families and communities. The course was developed using material from the World Health Organization Department of HIV/AIDS and discusses the relationship between HIV infection and tuberculosis as well as interventions that reduce the morbidity and mortality from TB in people living with HIV. The second part of the course focus on Hepatitis B, based on pertinent information from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive Kidney Diseases. Causes, diagnosis, treatment, and Hepatitis B research are discussed.

What is HIV?

$4.00 [1.00 CE Hours]
This brief, beginning level course on HIV is based on information from the Centers for Disease Control. It covers basic aspects of this infectious disease such as prevention, treatment, common myths and research. It also includes frequently asked questions about HIV and provides a very good overview for participants.

Anxiety Disorders (Spanish Version)

$8.00 [2.00 CE Hours]
Trastornos de ansiedad es un curso de nivel intermedio conciso que da una descripción de los diversos trastornos de ansiedad que actualmente afectan a más de 40 millones de adulto estadounidenses . Esta información se toma del Instituto Nacional de Salud Mental y fue diseñada para discutir brevemente la información pertinente sobre las opciones de tratamiento.

Understanding Autism Spectrum Disorders

$8.00 [2.00 CE Hours]
The purpose of this brief, intermediate level course is to provide a basic understanding of the characteristics, diagnosis, treatment, and prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorders. The course information is provided by the National Institute of Mental Health and covers the wide range of symptoms, skills, and levels of impairment or disability that children with ASD can have. It also touches on medications being used for ASD, co-occurring conditions, and issues that teens and adults with ASD face. Past and future research is discussed as well as the need to diagnose ASD early in order to begin interventions as quickly as possible. This course would be beneficial professionals who come into contact with children with autism spectrum disorders as well as for parents and caregivers.

For these courses and many more, visit TeachME

CDC: Mental disorders rising in children

Mental Disorders Rising in ChildrenMillions of American children suffer from depression, anxiety, autism spectrum disorders and an array of other mental health issues, and the prevalence of such conditions is rising, a new study shows.

Roughly one in five children experience a mental disorder in a given year, according to a report released Thursday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The costs for health care, special education, juvenile justice and other services for people under age 24 with mental disorders total nearly $250 billion each year, the report shows.

The study is the Atlanta-based CDC’s first comprehensive look at children’s mental health in the United States. It pulls together information from numerous national surveys and databases that CDC experts hope federal, state and local agencies will use to focus research and prevention efforts.

“Nobody is really spared,” said study author Dr. Ruth Perou. “It affects all demographics, boys and girls, and across all regions.”

Full story of rising mental disorders in children at The Atlanta Journal Constitution

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